Scripture reading – Ezekiel 40

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In earlier devotionals, I suggested that Ezekiel and Daniel were among the first captives taken from Judah to Babylon when King Jehoiachin was removed from his throne (Ezekiel 1:1-2). In today’s scripture passage, Ezekiel dated the time and year of his visions with Jehoiachin’s captivity and the destruction of Jerusalem (Ezekiel 40:1).

 

Ezekiel 40

Ezekiel’s first vision was recorded when he was 30 years old and was a captive for five years in Babylon (Ezekiel 1:1-2). The vision recorded in Ezekiel 40 came twenty years later, in the 25th year of the captivity. Therefore, we can conclude that the prophet was then a 50-year-old man when he received the vision of a new Temple (Ezekiel 40:1-2).

 

The Vision and a Heavenly Messenger (Ezekiel 40:2-4)

In Ezekiel’s vision, he was taken “into the land of Israel” to a “very high mountain” from which he could observe the rebuilding of Jerusalem (Ezekiel 40:2). The LORD sent a man whose appearance gives us the opinion that he was an angelic messenger, for his appearance was like bronze (Ezekiel 40:3a). The man stood in the gate of the city, and in his hand was a line of twine and a measuring rod (Ezekiel 40:3b).

Ezekiel was then instructed, “Son of man, behold with thine eyes, and hear with thine ears, and set thine heartupon all that I shall shew thee; for to the intent that I might shew them unto thee art thou brought hither: declare all that thou seest to the house of Israel” (Ezekiel 40:4).

The Temple of the Millennial Kingdom

The Temple of the Millennial Kingdom (Ezekiel 40:5-26) 

In his vision, Ezekiel followed his heavenly guide through a gate into the outer court of the Temple. They passed through the East Gate, and the wall that secured the Temple’s outer court (Ezekiel 40:5). The verses that followed were schematics of the dimensions of the Temple’s outer court. They described the porches, doorways, windows, and chambers, giving the dimensions in cubits (a cubit is believed to be 18 inches).

 

The Inner Courtyard of the Temple in the Millennial Kingdom (Ezekiel 40:27-47)

Ezekiel, accompanying his heavenly messenger, observed the man as he directed the prophet to record the measurements of the Temple’s inner courtyard, including the palm trees that adorned the posts and the steps that led into the Temple (Ezekiel 40:27-37).

Ezekiel observed various “chambers” (rooms) within the inner courtyard, with doorways and porches. He noticed eight tables made of hewn stone for slaying and washing the animals for the burnt offering, sin offering, and the trespass offering (Ezekiel 40:38-40). The other four hewn stone tables served as a place “whereupon also they laid the instruments wherewith they slew the burnt offering and the sacrifice” (Ezekiel 40:41-42). On the walls of those rooms were hooks, where the flesh of the offerings was hung so that all the blood might drain from the flesh (Ezekiel 40:43).

The Inner Courtyard of the Temple

Apartments for the Priests (Ezekiel 40:44-46)

Rooms dedicated to the Temple singers were in the inner courtyard (Ezekiel 40:44). Facing toward the south was another compartment used by priests who served as “keepers” or guards of the Temple (Ezekiel 40:45). At the south gate, facing northward, was another apartment used by the priests in charge of the sacrifices and who served the altar (Ezekiel 40:46).

 

The Temple (Ezekiel 40:48-49) 

Following his heavenly messenger, Ezekiel was led up the steps to the porch entrance of the Temple (Ezekiel 40:48) and the entrance to the outer sanctuary of the Temple (Ezekiel 40:49).

 

Closing thoughts

Ezekiel’s vision of the Temple continued through Ezekiel 41 and included the inner sanctuary of the Temple, “The Most Holy Place” (Ezekiel 41:4). 

Today’s Bible study concludes with my reflection on the Temple gates and doors that Ezekiel observed in his vision. I am reminded of the analogy Jesus Christ drew of Himself when He taught His disciples: “I am the door of the sheep” (John 10:7), “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6)

Let us never forget that salvation is only through Jesus Christ, His sacrificial death for our sins, and His resurrection from the dead. Through Christ alone is the forgiveness of sins, redemption, and the promise of heaven and eternal life. There is no other way to enter heaven and into the presence of God than through Jesus Christ. Is He your Savior?

Acts 4:12 – “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

Copyright © 2024 – Travis D. Smith 

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